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Silenced: How Apostasy and Blasphemy Codes are Choking Freedom Worldwide
     

Silenced: How Apostasy and Blasphemy Codes are Choking Freedom Worldwide

by Paul Marshall, Nina Shea
 

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Blasphemy accusations in the Muslim world are increasingly used as key tools by authoritarian governments and extremist forces to acquire and consolidate their power. These charges, which draw on disputed interpretations of Islamic law and carry a traditional punishment of death, have proved effective in crushing or intimidating not only converts and heterodox groups,

Overview

Blasphemy accusations in the Muslim world are increasingly used as key tools by authoritarian governments and extremist forces to acquire and consolidate their power. These charges, which draw on disputed interpretations of Islamic law and carry a traditional punishment of death, have proved effective in crushing or intimidating not only converts and heterodox groups, but also political and religious reformers. This volume provides the first world survey of the range and effects of such accusations in the contemporary Muslim world, in international organizations, and in the West.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Islamists, claiming they want only respect for their religion, are imposing brutal punishments for apostasy and blasphemy in the non-Muslim as well as the Muslim world. In this eloquent and definitive work Marshall and Shea make a powerful case that for us to accommodate this, anywhere, would be disastrous—weakening truly moderate Muslims and those of us who support them, and seriously crippling our own freedoms of speech and religion."— R. James Woolsey, Chairman, Foundation for Defense of Democracies; Former Director of Central Intelligence

"The book offers an extensive survey of blasphemy and its effects on Muslim societies and individuals, with a consideration of analogous developments in the contemporary West. The ad hoc way of enforcing blasphemy laws is placed in the framework of classical Islamic discussion where blasphemy is a function of state jurisdiction rather than simply of vigilante activism. As the book makes clear, evidence of arbitrary use of blasphemy is evidence also of contested state jurisdiction. This is a most valuable study."
— Lamin Sanneh, D. Willis James Professor of Missions & World Christianity, Yale University

"Paul Marshall and Nina Shea have performed an important service with this account of laws and customs against "apostasy" and "blasphemy" in Muslim countries."—The Weekly Standard

"Exhaustive, courageous research is on brilliant display in Silenced: How Apostasy and Blasphemy Codes are Choking Freedom Worldwide. Marshall and Shea compile a thorough dossier of existing Islamic blasphemy restrictions, show how they operate to bludgeon dissent, and chronicle a concerted campaign to export them around the globe. That alone would be a worthy achievement. But in addition, Silenced provides a ringing defense of free expression, upbraiding those who would acquiesce—out of craven fear, or flaccid political correctness—to a climate of self-censorship."—Books and Culture

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199912254
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
10/31/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
18 MB
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This product may take a few minutes to download.

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Paul Marshall is Senior Fellow at the Center for Religious Freedom, Hudson Institute.

Nina Shea is Director of the Center for Religious Freedom, Hudson Institute.

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